Over the last decade and still now, there have been immense job opportunities opening up for the gig economy and millennials are continuing to take a bigger piece of it.  Even the companies have started to attract this kind of workers to get jobs done in a more flexible, cheaper and efficient manner. To support this, a recent 2017 study reports that overall self-employment is likely to triple to 42 million workers by 2020, with Millennials leading the way.

A research by Deloitte has also used data collected over the years of millennials entering and exiting the gig economy which provides us with notable trends of the same that every leader who plans to hire this kind of workforce should keep in mind.

1. The proportion of women in the millennial alternative workforce is shrinking, possibly because more millennial women than men are going back to school.

In 2003, the millennial alternative workforce consisted of 52 percent men and 48 percent women; by 2015, that proportion had shifted to 60 percent men and only 40 percent women. This possibly could be due to millennial women are more likely than millennial men to pursue secondary education, with some leaving the workforce completely to do so. But it is also possible that women might be getting fewer opportunities than men due to lack of access to networks, financial capital, and underrepresentation at incubators. Hence, organizations should make sure that the alternative forms of work are accessible to all to ensure a diverse alternative workforce.

2. The proportion of household income millennials receive from alternative work is increasing.

Alternative workforce participation increased exponentially in 2007 and 2008 among the data collected. It is probably due to the recession as mostly millennials recorded high barriers of entry to the job market. Even though alternative millennial workforce participation may be slightly decreasing, the amount of overall income received from alternative work is still on the rise which clearly indicates that participants are going all out when they do participate in alternative worker arrangements.

3. Most alternative millennial workers make less than their traditional full-time employed counterparts.

As most of the organizations opt for alternative millennial workers rather than traditional full-time employees mainly because of saving money rather than choosing skilled candidates for a particular job and obtaining quality work, alternative millennial workers are paid less comparatively. This is supported by a study by the Bureau of Labor Statistics which found that organizations can save up to 30 percent of labour costs by opting for a contract worker over a full-time one. Not only the alternative millennial workers are being paid less than their fair market wages but also suffer due to the lack of long-term incentives like health insurance etc. that the traditional full-time employees enjoy. Thus, organizations should realize this and the potential of this workforce, and create better opportunities for the alternative millennial workers to use their expertise at their advantage for a better quality work and also provide them with better wages.

4. Millennial alternative workers are often supported by someone else in their household.

It was found that millennial alternative workers reported lower earnings compared to the general millennial population, it is no surprise that many are likely to have a household member helping them in running their home. Due to this finding, it was further researched and was found that the alternative worker is less likely than the traditional full-time employee to live alone or with a parent. Most alternative workers are also likely to seek assistance as they build their businesses and may rely on others in their household for doing so.

5. Alternative millennial workers are more likely to find jobs in the arts, maintenance, and administrative professions.

It has been deducted from the data that the alternative millennial workers are looking for jobs relating to their chosen skill or expertise and are mostly getting hired in the three distinct categories, in the arts, maintenance, and construction fields as well as administrative roles, and across two sectors, professional services and manufacturing. Organizations should now be pursuing more skill-based and project-based opportunities for these workers which would further help the workers to develop their skills and have relevant experiences.

6. Alternative millennial workers appear to be more likely to break the rules, have emotional agility, and work hard.

Personality questionnaires and surveys collected throughout the years that measured millennials’ attitudes, expectations, and beliefs have revealed that the alternative millennial workers are more dependable and self-disciplined, extroverted and enthusiastic, and being open to new experiences than the general millennial population. Thus, a millennial alternate workforce would prove to be better for entrepreneurial jobs.

It is most likely that the alternative workforce will continue to flourish each year but organizations still need to use this workforce best to their advantages for better business. As a result, organizations should just not consider their college degrees or traditional resumes while hiring but rather look how much the individual knows of that expertise needed for the specific job for better quality of work and productivity. Organizations while making themselves expand should also consider that this alternative workforce is getting treated well in terms of wages comparable to market prices, their self-development and learning to ensure that the people, organization and society are put in order to help fulfil the changing needs of the workers and workplace.